Schools broken, kids clueless? Teach nanotechnology with a game

Today’s young gamers don’t have much patience with boring textbooks and droning teachers. Fortunately, soon this may not hinder them from learning nanotechnology concepts, thanks to the London-based firm PlayGen, which looks like a serious, competent visualization and game producer. Managing director Kam Memarzia reports that the firm has signed up to the challenge of making nanotech learning truly fun:

PlayGen are developing an engaging interactive 3d learning game based on nano-sciences and nanotechnology.

The players are challenged in imaginative environments that promotes learning about: Molecular building, Nano-Imaging, Creation of Nano-devices, Nano-medicine, Quantum Behaviour, Manipulating Electrons and Nano-Materials.

Primarily focused on 12-18 age range – the game is also a valuable and fun way to learn about nanotechnology irrespective of age. Available online for the PC and through retail for PlayStation Portable.

PlayGen are seeking sponsorship to complete the PC version of the game. Sponsor(s) will get in-game advertising and tailor made version of the game for distribution.

Founded in 2001 by gaming industry experts, PlayGen is a London based game development studio with a strong and growing track record in developing serious games for training and learning purposes. See

Notice the sponsorship opportunity: this is your company’s chance to indoctrinate — er, inform — the nanotechnologists of tomorrow with your message.

Seriously: it’s true that today’s kids are used to new media. If we want them to learn, we need to put information into a form they can and will absorb. Heck, I wish we’d had games like this when I was trying to learn these concepts. Top research universities are staffed by researchers, not teachers, and the professors are mostly focused on how to escape from teaching, not on how to do it well. Students need all the help they can get. —Christine

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